Today being Wednesday, I thought share my thoughts, both on the defeat to Sheffield Wednesday and the games ahead.
Watching the game on Sunday, like most I was disappointed with the way Villa played in the first half. It was very much a game where we were nervous and needed to grow into. The game opened up in the 2nd half and we certainly had our chances. I was disappointed that some of the decisions didn’t go our way. There was an element to Villa’s play that was very much still the same old Villa. Not least, another goal keeping error that gifted Wednesday the win. That said, at times, Gollini also kept us in the game, so I am not going to be to critical. I think Gardener was well short in pace and ability and Di Matteo made the right call in replacing him with Tshibola.
Elphick was the stand out performer for Villa. He is a born leader and got in the way of everything coming down on the Villa goal. Not since the days of Laursen and Mellberg have we had that leadership from the back. I am really looking forward to see how he performs for the rest of the season.
McCormack, I think also did very well. Clearly not match fit, he showed good link up play and his dead ball delivery is something that has been missing from our game for a long while.
Overall, given were playing the Championship play off finalist on their own tuft, and despite the defeat, I am increasingly optimistic for the rest of the season. There have been a lot of out goings and still more business to be done, so fingers crossed we can get the right players in too.
On to Luton tonight, really hoping McCormack starts as well as Amavi and Tshibola. It will be great to see them get some minutes in and build up the match fitness. With home games against Rotherham and Huddersfield following over the next week, both should be games we should be looking to win. We need our best 11 out there regardless.